8 winter hacks that are perfect to keep your house and kids warm

Who’d have thought India would get so cold so quickly? Just two weeks ago, you were saying you wouldn’t need sweaters for a month at least. And look at you now, struggling to keep warm even with six layers on. You can’t do that for the next three months, can you? You certainly can’t allow your kids to catch colds and fevers in that time. So here are some simple tips you can use to keep yourself and your kids comfortable at home:

1. Open curtains when the sun is out.

Close your windows, certainly, after airing your rooms out for just about ten minutes in the morning. Once you’re sure there are no cold drafts sneaking in through cracks, push back your curtains so that you can warm your house with sunlight. If you leave your windows closed the rest of the day, you’ll be able to retain some of the heat to keep you comfortable through the night.

2. Make temporary thermal curtains for nights

Do you have any old razais that you’ve been thinking of throwing away? Don’t. Fix them onto your curtain rods until winter is over. Roll them up in the mornings and tie them with stoles or dupattas so that you can allow sunlight in during the day and let them down only at night.

Rug as curtain

3. Cover your windows with bubble wrap.

The days are now almost as chilly as nights, but if you try insulate your windows with layers of cloth, you’ll block sunlight. That’s where bubble wrap is perfect. It’s transparent enough to permit sunlight into the house, while its air bubbles work to keep the cold out. Just stick them onto your glass panes in whichever room you feel it’s coldest.

4. Put down rugs to keep heat from escaping through the floor

Through most of the year, we find carpets on the floor annoying. We have to keep hounding our house help to roll them up to sweep and mop below them. Plus they need vacuuming at least once a month. But during winter, they work as an excellent layer to keep heat from escaping from the floor. If you think carpets are too hard to store through the year, just put down fluffy rugs with rubber bottoms. Make sure you buy colours like beige, brown and rust to make your rooms seems cosier than they are.

5. Get fluffy house slippers for all your family members

What’s nicer than a soft, pink pair of bunny slippers to keep your kids from getting cold feet?

6. Warm beds with hot water bottles

You tuck your kids into bed at night with a thick comforter and perhaps an additional bedsheet or two. But for the first five minutes, they shiver even harder. That’s why it makes sense to place hot water bottles between the sheets about fifteen minutes before bedtime. They can use them to snuggle into throughout the night too, if they’d like that.

7. Make rice and cloth hand/foot warmers

To make hand/foot warmers, you need to:

  • Cut 2x1 rectangles out of old bed sheets

  • Fold the longer side by half and roughly sew up the sides

  • Fill it with raw rice till it’s ¾ full

  • Stitch up the remaining side to close it up completely

Whenever you or your kids’ hands or feet feel like ice, pop one or two of these into the microwave for a minute. They retain heat for more than an hour, so they’re perfect against your children’s hands and feet. They could also substitute the hot water bottles you keep in their beds.


8. Create a terracotta pot heater

Make this by:

  • Placing a candle in a jar

  • Suspending a fired clay pot upside down over the flame with the help of two bricks

Since most of us don’t have fireplaces at home like they do in the west, this acts as a very small one. Lighting just one won’t help too much, unless you’re sitting very close to it. You need at least three in a room.

Terracotta pot heater